After being subject to the fallout of the implosion of THQ, there was a real fear that South Park :Stick of Truth would never make it to release. Luckily, Ubisoft picked up this game and as they have mentioned deconstructed and rebuilt the game. After suffering further delays there were further fears that South Park: Stick of Truth wasn’t going to make it or worse, not be the Holy Grail of all things South Park.
You are the new kid on the block. Your parents have moved to a quiet mountain town to start a new life for you and are pleasantly surprised that you do not remember the events that have led up to you moving.You quickly make friends in your new home and meet the other inhabitants of South Park. Almost instantly you become embroiled in an ongoing war between the elves and the humans for the stick of truth. The stick holds the ultimate power and those who possess it control the universe.
The story takes many twists and turns, most of which are as absurd as you would expect from South Park. When you take into account that both Matt Stone and Trey Parker have had so much control and input into the direction of the game, things become off the wall crazy pretty fast. It is a great thing after all IF you like South Park.
South Park: Stick of Truth is easily the most true to life representation of a licenced product in a video game to date. This is greatly helped by the source material being simplistic in nature. It isn’t until you start to play the game that the full realisation of what has been achieved can be appreciated. The Stick of Truth is a close to perfect re-creation of the show’s look and feel. Every detail is there, right down to the textures of the craft paper that the world is created from. I challenge any South Park fan to play this game and not feel giddy with the overwhelming sense of being able to live and breathe in the South Park world. Also, if you think South Park itself looks and feels amazing, wait until you get to Canada, your mind might actually explode!
There are some things however, that become evident once you start moving your character around. It is then that it becomes clear that not everything is perfect. There is a large amount of crippling slowdown that occurs too often to be ignored. It is a real shame that some sort of slowdown appears in most scenes of the game and generally happens whenever you have entered
you will wonder if your eyes are playing tricks on you but other times it is so frustrating you feel like you could throw your controller across the room. It must be said that this slowdown is less present on the PC and this was experienced on the PS3 version of the game. One other issue which could be minor or a real annoyance depending on your tolerance level are the frequency of loading screens. Nearly every transition into a new screen has a loading screen attached. Thankfully Obsidian have created a fast travel system within the game which can help alleviate the sheer number of loading screens that you will encounter.
As well as the visuals being near perfect (albeit with various degrees of slowdown and some annoying loading screens) the sound design is just as great. Every single voice in the game is recorded by the original cast member. all the sound effects feel like they have been pulled directly from the show and everything just feels right with the audio. There isn’t much more that can be said – the audio is perfect and as true to the original source material that is possible.
South Park and the Stick of Truth shares a lot of similarities between the Paper Mario games in the way it looks and plays. As with a lot of RPG’s you get to create your own character from scratch. It really is something special to anyone who loves South Park to be able to create your very own avatar. It should be mentioned though that if you wish to create a female character this option isn’t really ever available and to give any more information would spoil some of the story. You also have an opportunity very early on to select your class. The standard classes are available such as Mage, Fighter, Thief and erm Jew. Yes there is a Jew class that essentially equals a normal Paladin class in any other game. Unfortunately your class choice doesn’t really have that much effect on your gameplay. You can equip gear of any class no matter who you chose to play as and the entire class system feels watered
The gameplay is in the style of a traditional turn based RPG and uses this formula to great effect. The turn based combat ramps up the interactivity by requiring timed button presses when you are both attacking and defending. By giving you these moments during a battle you never feel like control has been taken away from you. To assist you, most of your battles are accompanied by one other familiar South Park buddy. Who you take into battle with you can greatly affect the outcome of some of your tougher fights which gives some weight to your choice.
a lot lately for it’s less than tasteful humour. The Australian and European console versions have been slightly edited in a typical South Park way depending on which region you are playing in. It would be absurd to think that anyone who is buying this
game wouldn’t know what they are getting themselves in for however, Matt and Trey have taken what you would normally expect in South Park and ramped it up tenfold. The Stick Of Truth is also one of the funniest games that I have ever played. It is a mix of the familiar and the absurd perfectly blended all with the typical South Park references that make the series. To mention any of what they have created would spoil some of the delight of the adventure so I won’t go any further. It must be said that if you are often offended during a regular episode of South Park or do not find the
Anyone familiar with developer Obsidian’s earlier work (Knights of the Old Republic and Fallout New Vegas) might be expecting a large and expansive RPG universe with branching stories and multiple ways to progress through the game, but unfortunately this is not the case. The Stick of Truth is a very linear experience and the main story is over
far too quickly. I was left begging for more and this left me feeling like it lacked content. There are, of course many side missions available that help to pad out the play time. Most of these are brilliant and are as equally as good as the main story but you will still want more when it is all over.